Hearing impaired drivers use card to help communicate during a t - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Hearing impaired drivers use card to help communicate during a traffic stop

(Source: Hank Cavagnaro, KFVS) (Source: Hank Cavagnaro, KFVS)

A traffic stop is nerve-racking enough, but for those who are hard of hearing or deaf, the lack of communication can be even more frustrating. 

Jackie Cole is fully deaf and works as a case manager and Advocate for the Deaf at SEMO Alliance for Disability Independence (SADI).

She talks with the help of an interpreter and shared some of the problems the deaf community faces when dealing with a traffic stop.

"But we realize, it's our responsibility to put our hands on the wheel so when the police officer comes to the window he realizes that you're deaf," Jackie Cole said. "Then sometimes a paper would be used and we would write notes back in forth."

This frustration is why using a visor card has become so important.

"Especially for someone that is just full deaf," Cole said. "Writing back and forth is just very difficult for them so having that visor is so vital." 

Captain Jim McMillen with the Sikeston Department of Public Safety said officers are trying to distribute these cards to better help everyone.

"It was a person in the community who is deaf, who is concerned about being pulled over," McMillen said as he described how they came up with the idea. "It's got various signs and stuff on it where the officer can point and say you were speeding or you ran a stop sign or I need to see your drivers license." 

"We just want to be treated just like any other normal person," Cole said. "The only thing is we just don't have a voice." 

If you are interested in learning more or printing off your own card you can click here.

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